Month: May 2019

Kirby-James Represents Jets In Battle Of Britain

The bank holiday weekend saw a 3 day baseball tournament take place in Kent with teams drawn from all over the UK battling for the title in an event dubbed the ‘Battle of Britain’. 

Competing alongside Scotland and Ireland were also teams representing Kent, the Midlands, the North of England, the British Baseball League and our own South West Baseball League.

The South West team like the other teams was made up of All-Stars chosen from all the teams in the region, and alongside players from Plymouth, Cornwall, Newton Abbot, Cardiff, Bristol, Taunton, Yeovil and Exeter was Daniel Kirby-James from the Weston Jets.

The South West team won 3 of it’s 4 games on day 1 and after a loss to Scotland on day 2 faced the North of England team for a place in the final. The SWBL raced into an early 7-0 lead, with Kirby-James, the Jets regular centre fielder, playing in an unfamiliar position at second base, contributing with a great double hit which brought in 2 runs. The North was unable to make a comeback and the game finished 7-0 a result that saw the South West progress to the final on day 3.

The opponents for the SWBL in the final were Scotland, but it was the South West who took an early 2-1 lead putting the favourites on the back foot. Gradually however Scotland fought their way back into the game and by the 4th inning led 3 runs to 2. By the end of the 5th inning the score was 5-3 to Scotland and with no further runs scored the tournament ended with Scotland being crowned champions. 

Daniel Kirby-James was full of praise for his teammates afterwards; “We competed strongly in every game but Scotland were just too strong and deserved the win in the end after the baseball they played over all 3 days. Representing the South West though is easily the pinnacle of my sporting career” and he and his team did themselves and their clubs and the region proud. 

Bucs Get Revenge in Another Thriller

Catcher Darren Hines behind the plate

Weston Jets again faced the Buccaneers in the return match following last weeks nail biting game that saw the Jets overhaul defeat the Bucs this time ended in a victory for their rivals in another great showpiece for the sport growing in popularity.

Missing Chairman and first baseman Kev Robson and last weeks winning pitcher Mantas Sulinskas, the Jets nether the less entered the game in a confident mood despite the game having to be switched to Bristol from Weston’s home field at Hutton Moor due to unforeseen circumstances.

In a that closely resembled last weeks match up, the Jets started brightly but despite catcher Darren Hines scoring 2 runs the Jets found themselves 8 runs behind at the bottom of the 3rd inning.

Once again though the Jets rookies were the key players. Pitcher Marshall Hanney was also having a hot day with his bat and 2nd Baseman Garry Webb’s impressive early season form continued, while Dave Hepworth making his first ever start for the club in right Field was also having a great game and the Jets cut into Bristol’s lead.

Determined not to lose to Weston again the Bucs showed great skill and determination and pulled ahead again to lead by 8 runs by the end of the 7th inning.

Relief pitcher Gian Jimenez struggled with his control as the sunshine turned to rain although he was the best batter on the day gettting 5 hits, all of them doubles and entering the last inning another memorable Jets comeback seemed on as Weston had cut Bristol’s lead to just 4 runs.

This time though it wasn’t to be. The buccaneers held firm and The Jets fell just short of their target losing by the final score of 28 runs to 23.

With the Jets falling back to third place in the north division of the South West Baseball League, Garry Webb awarded the Most Valuable Player award said after the game; “The Bucs were just more consistent and handled the change in weather better than us and closed the game out this time for the win. They scored more regularly than us, but our defence is improving and our aggressive base stealing is having success”.

MVP: Garry Webb

Jets Defeat Bucs in Thriller

Nick Hodder steals home in Jets victory over Bucs

The Weston Jets defeated the Bristol Buccaneers in game 3 of the South West Baseball League on Sunday to record back to back wins for the first time ever and climbed to second place in the Northern Division. 

In a nail biting marathon of game that lasted over 5 hours the Jets claimed the win in dramatic fashion.

Batting first they raced into a 5 run lead and Jets starting pitcher Marshall Hanney allowed only 1 run in reply in the first couple of innings, demonstrating masterful control and precision on the mound. 

Weston scored 4 more in the 3rd inning but Bristol replied with 4 runs of their own and slowly clawed their way back into game cutting the Jets lead to just 3 as the game entered the bottom half of the 6th inning. It was then that things began to unravel for the visitors as the home team’s bats got hot and they put 13 unanswered runs onto the scoreboard to lead by a seemingly unassailable margin of 10 runs as the game entered the last inning.

Weston however refused to be beaten, and a combination of aggressive baserunning and good hitting saw the Jets score run after run, with almost every player on the team contributing to an unprecedented comeback. The Bristol players crumbled under the Jets pressure and by the time the Jets last batter struck out the 10 run deficit had incredibly turned into a 4 run lead.

The Jets however still needed to see the game out and the task fell to Weston’s young relief pitcher Mantas Sulinskas. 

Despite some fantastic pitching, Bristol scored 2 runs and had the potential game-winning runners on the bases but an incredible double play from Jets shortstop Chris Taylor and first baseman Kev Robson stopped any possibility of a Buccaneers comeback and the Jets held on to win an exhausting game by the score of 30 runs to 28.

Weston’s Chairman Kev Robson said afterwards; “ We showed unbelievable character and an amazing ‘never give up’ attitude. My guys never stopped believing and the aggression we showed running the bases was the key to the win. Bristol actually had more than 20 hits more than us during the game but we stole twice as many bases than them and that was what won us the game”.

Robson was especially proud of 2 of the Jets rookie players; “ Garry Webb had a fine game getting 3 hits for himself and driving in 5 runs for the team while Marshall Hanney was immense pitching 7 solid innings, stealing an incredible 12 bases and scoring 5 runs for the team”.

MVP: Marshall Hanney